From math to makeup

Chantal Levanel, Cheeky Cosmetics, Okanagan Artisans Guild Show and Sale

Chantal Levanel of Vernon

Chantal Levanel of Vernon

Since the days of Cleopatra, beautifying the face with makeup has been known as a true art form. Chantal Levanel of Vernon is an artist whose medium is makeup, which she handcrafts herself.

“I created Cheeky Cosmetics because health-conscious, environmentally-aware vegetarians with sensitive skin deserve makeup that’s fun too,” said Levanel, whose products are handmade with natural minerals and certified organic plant oils and waxes.

“My degree in mathematics helps me evaluate the safety reports of ingredients and create makeup that meets extremely high standards. I am a self-diagnosed colour addict and mixing colours feeds my habit!”

Levanel earned her BA from UBCO in 2006, with a major in mathematics and a minor in French. She then achieved her teaching certificate in 2007, also from UBCO, and taught high school math for a year in Quebec and Hope.

After this she realized she wanted to change her career path and follow her artistic inclinations.

“I wanted to have more control over my life, with more freedom to express myself creatively. I’ve always enjoyed crafts and I loved the idea of creating a job to suit my interests and abilities.

“I use only pure, high quality minerals and other natural and certified organic ingredients, including mica, zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, iron oxides, and tin oxide in my powder products; for my lip products, I also use organic sweet almond oil, organic castor oil, organic jojoba oil, candelilla wax, vitamin E, and organic peppermint flavouring.”

All products are 100 per cent handmade by Levanel, and are completely vegan.

Levanel is also well-versed in social networking and does most of the marketing and sales for Cheeky Cosmetics online from its website, which also includes tutorials teaching customers how to apply the makeup themselves.

“I taught myself web design when I started my business,” she said.

Levanel will be showcasing Cheeky Cosmetics at the Okanagan Artisans Guild Show and Sale at the Best Western Vernon Lodge Nov. 25 and 26. (Friday, noon to 9 p.m.; and Saturday, 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.) More information on Cheeky Cosmetics can be found at www.cheekycosmetics.ca.

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Now in its 32nd year, the Okanagan Artisans Guild has added social networking to its promotional repertoire with thanks to Chantal Levanel, who donated her skills with social networking media, building the guild its own Facebook page and e-mail marketing program.

“The Okanagan Artisans Guild is committed to its stewardship of the old crafts, and the artisans which are keeping them alive,” said show publicist Debbee Werner. “There is a demand for locally handmade products and the quality of our annual show is well-known.

“Adding social networking to our promotion will help us to reach a new audience, as well as stay connected with our already loyal supporters.”

Three information areas have been developed on Facebook: The first being the “Like Us” connection, which shares information with interested Facebook parties; the second is the Events option, where friends can let each other know their plans to attend the event; and the third area provides room for comment.

The guild has launched a competition to assist in its campaign. Visitors to the new Facebook page will be given three opportunities to enter a prize draw for $200 spending money at the show, plus a fine dining experience at the Vernon Lodge’s BX Creek Bar & Grill, valued at $100.

The Okanagan Artisans Guild Show & Sale is the longest running show of its kind in Vernon, and showcases locally handcrafted work, in gift and other items. Visitors can expect to see a variety of wares including pottery, glass, metalwork, woodwork, sculpture, Raku, jewellery, photography, paintings, designer clothing, weaving and other fibre arts, cosmetics, body-care products, and much more. Admission is free.

All three ballrooms at the Lodge will be filled with quality fine arts and crafts.

“The Lodge is a very comfortable venue for both the artisans and their visitors, and the ballrooms lend the perfect backdrop to the artisans’ beautiful displays and artworks,” said Werner.

For more information, please call Susan Richards at 250-545-4757 or visit www.okanaganartisansguild.com or www.facebook.com/OkanaganArtisansGuild.